Western Australian Viticulture Industry Biosecurity Manual

Page last updated: Friday, 10 August 2018 - 11:43am

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A pest risk assessment of pests with reported occurrences in Australia but which have not established in Western Australia (WA) found 45 pests that were considered priority pest threats to the viticulture industry in WA. This manual provides guidance on how to prevent, monitor, identify and manage these priority pest threats.

Executive summary

The Western Australian Viticulture Industry Biosecurity Manual (WAVIBM) has been developed to provide biosecurity information to the Western Australian viticulture industry. The aim is to reduce the impact on the industry from incursions of exotic organisms that are already established in other parts of Australia and may pose a threat to the Western Australian viticulture industry’s viability and sustainability. This manual  provides information to build the knowledge of pest threats within the industry and the general public, encourage reporting of pest issues and provide initial management knowledge should incursions occur.

With the Western Australian viticulture industry valued in excess of $800 million in 2015, working to protect Western Australia (WA) from new pest threats is highly important for the state’s economy.

With the ever increasing movement of produce, plants and people around the world, including into WA, the threat of pest incursions is ever present. Even with well managed border biosecurity protection, 100% protection cannot be guaranteed. For this reason, industries need to have solid biosecurity plans in place, for an industry as a whole, and for individual growers at business and vineyard level.

An important starting point for a good biosecurity plan is for industry and individual businesses to know and understand what threats they may face, to understand the potential impact of and having some knowledge on how to react in the advent of an incursion. This manual provides summarised information on good biosecurity practices for vineyards along with pest profiles for each of the priority pest threats to the WA viticulture industry as identified in the ‘Western Australian Viticulture Industry Biosecurity Plan’.

It is important to remember that this is not a stand-alone document as it only covers pest threats that are known to already occur in Australia, but not yet established in WA. The publication ‘Biosecurity Manual for the Viticulture Industry’ by Plant Health Australia provides similar information on pest threats that are not yet established in Australia. Grape producers should also familiarise themselves of these pest threats.

Knowledge of pests — where they are, their impact, their spread potential and management options — is constantly shifting. As a result, a manual such as this should be reviewed on a regular basis to ensure it provides as much up to date information as possible to allow fast and effective decision making when incursions occur.

The WAVIBM was developed by the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, Western Australia, in consultation with the viticulture industry in Western Australia. It is part of an overall project to increase biosecurity preparedness within the WA viticulture industry, ‘Surveillance and diagnosis for pests and diseases in the WA grape industry’, which in turn is part of the state wide ‘Boosting Biosecurity Defences’ project, supported by Royalties for Regions funding.